Give Up the Cup

Are you a daily coffee drinker?

Have you ever thought about giving up coffee for a week? For a year? For good?

Here’s the story of a coffee addict that decided to give up her cup for 5 days, to see how she felt.

It all started with a Julia Naftulin, a woman in her 20’s balancing work, a romantic life, and a social life, all while running on 2-3 cups of Joe, daily. She was reliant on coffee to get her through the day, just so she could make time for everything. Don’t get me wrong, I know it’s hard balancing multiple things, all while trying to keep up enough energy! I am a full-time student, with 2 jobs, involved in Greek life, and yes, I still make time for friends.

It’s HARD, caffeine helps.

It got to the point where she drank too much coffee, she started getting jittery, and had a hard time sleeping at night. She decided to stay away from all forms of caffeine for 5 days straight so she would be able to reap the benefits of the no caffeine lifestyle.

“People who drink more than 400mg of caffeine a day are more likely to experience withdrawal symptoms like headaches and irritability.”-Largeman-Roth. Naftulin knew she didn’t drink nearly as much as that, so she figured she was in the clear, and was excited to start her caffeine-less journey.

A new lifestyle on Day 1: she felt weird. It was the first time she was breaking her normal routine, which included coffee. She went to work, without her daily cup of coffee and was FREEZING. Let's be real, which office isn’t colder than Antarctica? Instead of making a cup of coffee to warm her up, she decided to go with a nice, hot cup of non-caffeinated tea. Later, she started feeling herself getting drowsy and falling asleep at her desk. She remembered being told that fruit helps wake you up because of the natural sugars in it, so she ate an apple, and drank some water, which gave her the energy to get through the day.

Moving onto day 2: This is when the irritability kicked in. She started getting bothered by little things, like people walking too slow, or people talking too loudly.  She was getting tired throughout the day and knew she wouldn’t be able to last through the end of her plans for the day, so she decided to book a nap pod at a yoga studio nearby where she worked.  Although it was an interesting experience, the nap gave her the energy she needed to make it through the day, caffeine free.

Sleep walking to day 3: The day started off easy, she was able to wake up much easier than usual, but as the day went on, she was craving her daily caffeine.  She got to work from home today, since it was snowing. In the middle of her work day she fell asleep on the couch, with her laptop still on her lap. She was in disbelief, but also very glad her nap helped her power through the rest of the day at work.

An early end to day 4: This day was hard for her, but she was able to make it through with some de-caffeinated tea. As soon as she got home, she was ready to sleep, so she made it to bed by 9:30, and called it a night.

The final stretch, day 5: Today she was craving coffee and it’s taste more than ever. It wasn’t that she needed the caffeine boost, but rather she wanted to taste her morning cup of Joe. She was able to get through the day and was so excited for tomorrow, because she was finally able to taste coffee again.

Lessons learned: From this caffeine free journey, Julia was able to learn a lot about herself and gave her a different direction on how she drinks her coffee. She decided to start getting the correct amount of sleep and drinking enough water during the day to eliminate the need for drowning in 3 cups of coffee each day.

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